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Limits

Wasn’t it the Austrian-Jewish-British philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein who said ‘whereof you cannot speak, thereof you must be silent’? Well I never fully understood Wittgenstein beyond loving his idea that we can prove the existence of other people by the existence

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Posted in censorship, criticism, feminism, literature, Poetry, women, Writing

Taking chances

I am quite a cautious person. I like rules. I like to research the rules and then implement them. Teachers love me. But recently I’ve got bored with that and I’ve done a couple of things on instinct. I’ve enjoyed

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Posted in characters, creativity, criticism, feedback, film, friendship, Poetry, reading

What not to do in Poetry Class

Bollocks. Why do I take these risks? I forget that the stakes are quite high in these places and that it matters, or at least it does to me, how I feel when I go out the door. I’m talking

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Posted in creativity, criticism, feedback, feminism, life writing, literature, Poetry, reading, women, Writing

What I’m reading now

Well, I am taking a few of my ten minutes (almost a month) for a holiday from England. I am going to the back of beyond to play Treasure Island and Swiss Family Robinson on the west coast of Ireland.

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Posted in characters, criticism, James Kelman, literature, narration, reading, Writing, writing novels

Me, Usain Bolt, French tarts and the Olympics of Fear

I have always thought of myself as intrepid. Equal to anything. Resilient. A brilliant bouncer-back. A great survivor. Finding myself unhappily between careers, I picked myself up, dusted myself down and thought I’d try my hand as a patissière. Yes.

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Posted in creativity, criticism, feedback, Writing

Ironic bombs: Jane Austen, Jennifer Egan and twitter

Are you on top of the technology? Jane Austen was. Yes, not only did she write beautiful, compelling prose, she also understood the technology she was using. I did not know that until I took a seminar with Barry Webb,

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Posted in Barry Webb, characters, criticism, irony, literature, narration, reading, Writing, writing novels

Listerature and pillow fights. With lobsters

A few years ago we went out for the evening to the Supper Club in London. This place, which features a louche cabaret for diners who recline on beds while they eat, started as an illegal underground dive in Amsterdam

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Posted in creativity, criticism, friendship, literature, Writing

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